The City,  Travel Guides

7 Unique & Fun Things to Do in Fort Collins, CO

These days, it’s hard to narrow down the best places to visit in Colorado. As a former resident of Fort Collins, I’d say that this town should make the top of your list. There are endless fun things to do in Fort Collins for all types of travelers. It offers quaint hidden gem vibes for the more luxurious traveler with quality shopping, food, and unique lodging. While the more granola folks can enjoy endless outdoor adventures and some of the best breweries in the nation. 

Beyond its list of activities, Fort Collins’ location makes it a no-brainer stop on road trips through Colorado or a spontaneous weekend trip from Denver. It’s just an hour north up I-25 from Denver which makes for a super easy drive. If you’re road-tripping in Colorado, I recommend starting or ending in Fort Collins as it puts you at the North end of the state just outside of WY. That way you can mosey your way through from one end to the other.

1. Horsetooth Reservoir

Horsetooth Reservoir is near and dear to my heart. It was an oasis when I first moved to Colorado on my own and is now one of my favorite places in the state. Anyway, off my soapbox. Horsetooth could have its own entire blog post but I’ll give you the rundown here. There are a number of things to do including hiking, biking, camping, boating, watching sunsets, and simply hanging on the shores. All you have to do is purchase a 10-dollar day pass and you’re good for 24 hrs. 

2. Fort Collins Colorado Breweries

Fort collins colorado breweries

Not only is Fort Collins home to the fourth-largest brewery in the US, New Belgium Brewing Co. but there are also over 20 more craft breweries throughout the city. Coming in at a close second is Odell Brewing Co. While Odell has 2 additional taprooms in Denver, their OG brewhouse in FoCo is definitely worth a stop. If you’re hoping to make the most of the Fort Collins brewery scene, you might consider taking a guided (or self-guided) beer and bike tour. Fort Collins is known as one of the most accessible biking cities in the nation making beers and biking a fun and safer way to explore the brewery scene. If you plan to make your own brewery-hopping route, this map of FoCo breweries is helpful!

3.  Old Town, Fort Collins

Old Town is the historic downtown district of Fort Collins. Though small, this lively neighborhood is packed with entertainment, completely adorned with brick streets, and has a gorgeous town square. If you need recommendations for places to stay in Fort Collins Colorado, search within this district first and foremost. Here is where you will find many Fort Collins events and the best shopping, dining, and bars. Need a night out on the town? Head to the number-one speakeasy in the nation! Social is located right in the heart of Old Town Square and offers up prohibition-style elevated cocktails. Afterward, head around the corner to Fort Collins’ oldest dive bar Town Pump so you can humble yourself a bit…

4. Fort Collins Colorado Restaurants 

Fort Collins Colorado restaurants

Did I mention eating yet? Be sure to fuel your brewery tours and speakeasy night out with some epic meals in between. There is an eclectic food scene here with the college crowd craving late-night or hungover munchies while the more sophisticated hipster crowd prefers the farm-to-table fare. Rest assured, there’s something for everyone. 

5. Explore CSU Campus and Attend Sporting Events

If you’re looking for more Fort Collins events, use Colorado State University! For those of you visiting in the late spring or summer months, I highly recommend strolling through CSU’s Annual Flower Trial Garden. Besides being a beautiful and historic campus to walk through, it’s also fun to attend their D1 sporting events. And while it’s definitely no Big Ten display, you’ll still get sucked into the nostalgic university spirit. Who knows, maybe you leave Fort Collins as the Ram’s new biggest fan? Of course, the sporting event you attend will depend on the season you choose to visit, check out their athletics schedules here!

6. Cache La Poudre River

fun things to do in Fort Collins

Fort Collins is home to the Cache la Poudre River where you can enjoy more water activities and spend a day on the river. A budget-friendly and very fun way to experience the Poudre River is to grab a river tube and simply float on down. Check out the Coloradoan’s Guide to Floating Along the Poudre Canyon for the best times to go, where to buy your tube, and where to float. For an easier way to tube or just dip your toes and hang check out the Poudre River Whitewater Park that’s just north of Old Town. The final exciting way to get on the river is via Whitewater rafting. The river features class III and IV levels and don’t worry, going through one of these companies will provide you with a guide. 

7. Go to the Drive-In

fun things to do in Fort Collins

Last on the list of fun things to do in Fort Collins is going to the drive-in. Just across from the aforementioned Horsetooth Reservoir, you’ll find the Holiday Twin Drive-In. Here you can see everything from the newest blockbusters to the old classics while enjoying your favorite snacks and getting cozy in your own digs. Hot Tip: Get there for sunset so you can watch it go down over the reservoir from your trunk.

Now that you have an arsenal of fun things to do in Fort Collins, CO you should have no problem planning that perfect trip. Not to mention, your decision fatigue for the best places to visit in Colorado should have subsided by now. This place truly holds a special spot in my heart. Everyone that visited me while I lived there absolutely fell in love with it and it’s easy to see why. Fort Collins is definitely worth visiting and has just a touch of something for everyone. 

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